Authors: Joshua Cohan
(WASHINGTON) -- Rep. Steny Hoyer, the No. 2-ranked Democrat in the House of Representatives, placed his party’s odds at re-taking control of the lower chamber at dead-even Tuesday, offering a more bullish forecast than Speaker John Boehner’s prediction that there is a one-in-three shot the GOP will lose control of the House.
“There’s a higher chance than 1 in 3,” Hoyer, D-Md., told reporters at his pen and pad briefing at the Capitol Tuesday afternoon. “At best from [Boehner’s] perspective, I think it’s 50/50.”
Hoyer, the Democratic Whip, admitted that recent polling is “pretty volatile” and the results depend largely on how pollsters phrase questions. Still, he predicted that President Obama’s personal favorability ratings would benefit his party’s prospects for a majority this fall and added that “Democrats have pretty consistently run ahead of the Republicans over the last 12 months on generic ballots.”
Hoyer also said Democrats are targeting 78 congressional districts that were either won by Obama in 2008 or both Sen. John Kerry in 2004 and Obama in 2008, where he said Democrats are running “excellent candidates.”
Democrats need a net gain of 25 seats to overcome the House Republican majority.
“We have a very significant number of challengers who have outraised the Republican incumbents,” Hoyer said, adding that the House Democratic campaign arm has also outraised its GOP counterpart. “We’re going to pick up a lot of seats and I think we’ll take back the majority.”
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